wild raspberries

i used to grow

wild raspberries

but you didn’t care for the chaos

of thorn and bramble

when i became your piece of property,

a squared-off


of me

you wanted me to grow grass

so you tilled and you tamped

and you seeded my soil

with your image of beauty

individuality renounced

conformity blessed

dandelions disallowed

even this yellow attempt to create

in the way in which i was created


herbicidal rain

artificial food

mechanical insemination

so i did what you asked

i grew grass,

a profusion of lush greenery

which you



so flawlessly neat

so perfectly tidy

toilsome chore of control

but i used to grow

wild raspberries


when i look into your eyes

i see the eyes of a child born

innocent in this world

and i wonder what they saw

to make them see

the world the way they do?

i wish i knew the answer to

what makes eyes that harm

eyes that see an enemy

or a friend

in me

eyes that see dark clouds

or rainbows in a storm

for i don’t understand somehow

how raised fists and open arms both

create eyes that crave for love

how both poverty and wealth

create eyes that hunger

how it is that rich protection

as well as stark survival both

make eyes that fear

how pain gives birth to both

the eyes of oppression and compassion

for i can somehow see

that beholding pain gives birth to eyes

of both the rapist and the saint

so tell me Dahmer, Ghandi

Hitler, Theresa

Jesus and dear mirror

what did your eyes see

to make you see

the world the way you do?






dessicated valley

there is a land

an isolated valley

of nothingness


where seeds of hope

dropped from above

excitedly begin to grow


when occasional

violent storms


upon the desiccation


eager sprouts


toward light, non-existent


as tentative roots


for something deeper


only to discover

toxic truths

of a land abandoned

long ago


desecrated soil

contaminated water

subterranean lethality


hope shrivels

ephemeral existence

impression in the dust


swept away

by these howling

whirlwinds of my pain

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